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Rumney Top Anchors
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Nov 12, 2015
Many of the more moderate routes at Rumney are equipped with quick clip anchors for lowering off. The decision to use them was a conscious decision made by first ascensionists, and the RCA to make change overs quick and safe.
If you have ever been near anyone shouting instructions up to a newby partner who has to thread a top anchor, you will know how dangerous and slow this can be.

These quick clips or clippies have been wonderful, but a maintenance nightmare. The early ones were stainless with a wire gate. They worked great, but the stainless was so soft that ropes quickly cut a dangerous groove. Some of these wore out in less than a year.

The second generation were forged carabiners with a solid gate. These wore better but the gate springs have not been holding up well in our Eastern weather. They seem to be made more for indoor use.

Dave Quinn has introduced a bent wire drop in which is commonly called a ram's horn. These have the benefit of no moving parts. but we will have to see how long they last.

Where am I going with this? I have been trying to maintain the solid gate units by spraying with WD40 and adding silicone grease. I have done all of them in the Meadows this way. I know WD is not recommended for cams etc because it has oil in it, but the straight silicone suggested by Fixe did nothing to even stop squeaks, much less weatherproof.

I thought if many of the Rumney regulars could climb with a little spray can, we might get a couple of years out of the remaining forged units. Since silicone, which is safe for ropes didn't work, do we want to use WD, a silicone grease? I guess I am just asking for the community to help out a little, and if nothing else, they could post on this thread where problems exist.

In the meantime, I have replaced a dozen or so forged units with floppy gates with a steel wire gate biner. Again, we will see how long these last.
kemple sr.
Joined Jun 8, 2011
97 points
Nov 12, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Summit of Liberty Bell
According to metolius, WD40 is safe/will not weaken slings (metoliusclimbing.com/how-to-ca... ) so it probably isn't bad for ropes either. SpencerB
Joined Dec 6, 2013
84 points
Nov 12, 2015
I will be willing to do my part in slowing down the pace at which DQ has to replace quickies with rams horns. Just tell me what to buy and bring.

On my recent trip to RRG, Muir Valley in particular, I saw something we might want to adopt at Rumney. Near the top of each trail leading up to a "beginners' crag", you will find a replica anchor setup, set about six feet off the ground, in rock but away from the start of any route proper. At Muir, this means a pair of those nasty Fixe hangers with a single SS rap ring through each. At Rumney, I suppose we could use two hangers with a pair of q-links on each, for the worst case scenario. The purpose of the replica setup is of course to show beginners how to properly clean a non quickie anchor system, thus avoiding the high-stress, shouting back-and-forth business we have all witnessed only too often. Just to throw an idea out there.
S. Neoh
Joined Oct 4, 2009
563 points
Nov 12, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: bouldering
those quick clips were INMOP a real bad move. they dumbed down the climbing experience and helped foster an atmosphere of complacency and stupidity that all my decisions have been made for me. I don't have to think about anything or make any real decisions. All I have to do is clip those thingys and everything will be fine. way too many instances of leader being too lazy to take one more lap to clean the draws trying to talk their girfriend or child through it from the ground. bad ju Ju. Too many people that don't even know how to clean an anchor that dosen't have the clip thingys on it. Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
352 points
Nov 12, 2015
S. Neoh wrote:
I will be willing to do my part in slowing down the pace at which DQ has to replace quickies with rams horns. Just tell me what to buy and bring. On my recent trip to RRG, Muir Valley in particular, I saw something we might want to adopt at Rumney. Near the top of each trail leading up to a "beginners' crag", you will find a replica anchor setup, set about six feet off the ground, in rock but away from the start of any route proper. At Muir, this means a pair of those nasty Fixe hangers with a single SS rap ring through each. At Rumney, I suppose we could use two hangers with a pair of q-links on each, for the worst case scenario. The purpose of the replica setup is of course to show beginners how to properly clean a non quickie anchor system, thus avoiding the high-stress, shouting back-and-forth business we have all witnessed only too often. Just to throw an idea out there.


Picture of one of the anchors at RRG. They do work really well to let you show beginners how to clean anchors and have them practice close to the ground. Not sure how viable it is at Rumney. Perhaps at one of the boulders at Parking lot or Meadows.

Rock Climbing Photo: rrg anchor
rrg anchor
Jake D.
From Northeast
Joined Nov 23, 2006
460 points
Nov 13, 2015
I think the demo anchor set up is a good idea. However, it is my understanding that there have been MANY accidents in recent years at the Red, most of them involving lowering off. I don't claim to be savvy about it, but a friend who is a member down there, was concerned enough to donate money for some of the new steel gates I just bought. kemple sr.
Joined Jun 8, 2011
97 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: John Sherman
Found the new ram's horns on Rose Garden this past weekend. (I haven't climbed at Rumney since early August) I found them extremely difficult to clip my carabiner to when topping out. I forget if the difficulty was in clipping one leg, or both legs. Is clipping one leg possible? I think I was trying to do both, which seems like it would be the right thing to do. Anyway, point of my post, when you have lines that runout to the finish, or any line for that matter, last thing I want to do is desperately try again and again and again to clip the horns. I know I'm not offering a solution. And I didn't break down the climb, so I'm not really sure how that went. Just throwing in input that my first experience was not the greatest...

I will be interested to see how they are to break down. Those things were small, wondering how the rope fits in there when you have an existing and weighted anchor.
Tom Sherman
From Bristol, RI
Joined Feb 23, 2013
432 points
Nov 13, 2015
Tim, the RRG is a vast area. Each major crag seems to have its "favorite" anchor system. A significant number of anchors at Muir happen to be the nasty Fixe ones I mentioned above. They are PITA and I can see people getting frustrated and messing up in the process. That said, these are rap anchors; they will cause your rope to kink if you were to lower rather than rap clean. Really inefficient. I think what we are all looking for at Rumney is an anchor system which allows lowering (links that meet so no kinking), relatively easy to clean, and relatively inexpensive to maintain. One or 2 years ago I would have said the solution les with those expensive solid gate quick clips. Alas, as we have witnessed, the gates do not hold up well and they are pricey to replace. So, DQ is replacing them with ram's horns. Let's hope second time is the charm. If not, I think we should all be OK with a pair of quick links on each anchor hanger or glue in. Yes, we will have to untie, thread, and tie back in but overall still faster than most of the anchor systems I encountered at RRG just a month ago.
P.S. For ram's horns equipped anchors, I clip my draws to the link or hanger that holds the ram's horns. Because of its shape, I found it quite hard to get clip the horn itself; mostly just knocking it all over the place with the draw!
@ Break down, just "wiggle" the rope into both ram's horns, weigh both, remove your draws or slings, and lower away. Maybe takes 5 seconds more per ram's horns compared to quick clips. I too was skeptical at first but after a handful of routes, I am a convert. Got to give the Euros credit for the design, altho they lower off a SINGLE horn over there. So they are still nuts.
S. Neoh
Joined Oct 4, 2009
563 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: bouldering
This is the best top anchor INMOP. tons of room to clip in and easily replaceable.
Rock Climbing Photo: best top anchor inmop
best top anchor inmop
Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
352 points
Nov 13, 2015
My partner and I were surprised by a ram horn style anchor on Underdog in late August. Of course we weren't thrilled about figuring out a new anchor at the top of a climb, this style is really intuitive and easy to clean.

I'm glad to hear the anchors on Rose Garden were replaced, the previous set was pretty worn down.
tylermoody
Joined May 25, 2015
29 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: bouldering
Fast should have jack shit to do with it! take your time. be methodical. don't fuck up and die. Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
352 points
Nov 13, 2015
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
This is the best top anchor INMOP. tons of room to clip in and easily replaceable.

Yup. If ram's horns do not work out for whatever reason, I think this should be the way to go.
S. Neoh
Joined Oct 4, 2009
563 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: The dangler
I recently put new stainless solid gate biners at the top of peer pressure to replace the d-biner and locker that was always locked when you got to the top hahaha.

I personally think the rams horns are the best option and I love how easy they are to use. Saw them at the top of Underdog for the first time this year and like seeing that they are becoming the standard replacement.
Andrewww
From Concord, NH
Joined Mar 19, 2014
542 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: John Sherman
S. Neoh wrote:
I clip my draws to the link or hanger that holds the ram's horns.


Ahhh, now I'm at a loss. I always clip my anchors to the last link before the quick-clip, not sure why I would have been establishing the anchor on the horns? How are these attatched? Are the ram's horns on quicklinks? They can't be right off the stud can they? or right off the hanger? Maybe they're on quicklinks and I thought it was too bulky in the link? I have the worst memory, but in any event I'll think of this next time I come across this...

Edit: actually I am pretty anal about establishing my anchor underneath fixed quick-clips (after seeing a carabiner loaded sideways over one when weighted). Maybe I couldn't slide the horn high enough up the link to get my biner underneath the horn, so I went right into it??? Still can't recall why I wouldn't have used the hanger then...
Tom Sherman
From Bristol, RI
Joined Feb 23, 2013
432 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: bouldering
why even bother with the ramns horns? Sounds like just annother attempt to come up with a lazy persons solution to a life and death action that we perform routinly every time we climb. It's too easy to just take the top of the climb / lowering for granted and get complacent if you equip all the climbs with clips or horns that do not require a deliberate thought process.

the anchor I pictured has multiple large bomber clip in points. It resists getting clustered even with multiple persons at the same station. It is easy and straight forward to use and easy to replace.
Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
352 points
Nov 13, 2015
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
This is the best top anchor INMOP. tons of room to clip in and easily replaceable.


Agreed. Cheap as well and easy to find locally.
T Roper
From DC,VA,NM,UT,CT,MA
Joined Mar 31, 2006
1,054 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Me eating a cliff bar walking back from Frankenste...
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
This is the best top anchor INMOP. tons of room to clip in and easily replaceable.



Agreed. Take 5 minutes to learn how to clean and lower. If this fat 5.6 guy can do it everyone can..
Bill Kirby
From Baltimore Maryland
Joined Jul 21, 2012
449 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Horizontal in Skin the Cat (5.12-).
S. Neoh wrote:
Got to give the Euros credit for the design, altho they lower off a SINGLE horn over there. So they are still nuts.


Threading two horns is a pain, and feels like it would start to kink the rope. A single horn really does feel sufficient for me. I like the horns a lot, but feel like two is borderline excessive. Still many thanks to the RCA, Team Tough, and other volunteers for all the anchor work.
Eli Buzzell
From Lives in a 4runner
Joined Nov 21, 2010
4,378 points
Nov 13, 2015
I wish I have pics of the ram's horns setup DQ typically puts up. No, the horn does not go directly into the anchor hanger or glue-in. There is link or chain in between.
Quick clips have traditionally been "limited" to the most popular routes. However, the list of most popular routes is getting longer all the time :) So the number of quick clip equipped routes are now quite high. I do not know for a fact but Tim Sr seems to imply above that many Meadow and Parking Lot Wall routes now have quick clips? Nick, there are still MANY climbs at Rumney with the anchor system you have shown. Not all is lost, yet :)
Edit: yes this ME guy got confused; bec of its shape, two horns can't actually closely touch like two qlinks can. Correct me if I am wrong. So, yes, possible kinking but not as badly as those Fix anchors set 8 inches apart!
S. Neoh
Joined Oct 4, 2009
563 points
Nov 13, 2015
Eli Buzzell wrote:
Threading two horns is a pain, and feels like it would start to kink the rope. A single horn really does feel sufficient for me. I like the horns a lot, but feel like two is borderline excessive. Still many thanks to the RCA, Team Tough, and other volunteers for all the anchor work.

Horns can be made from different size metal stocks. I think it is posted somewhere on the RCA site that the ones used at R does not have excessively high rating. I am assuming that the single horn Euro system uses a larger horn (made from thicker stock) paired with a 1/2" (?) glue-in. Besides, this vertically inline system have a lower back-up, usually a solid qlink or locking biner, which is not weighted unless the top horn fails. They might be nutty but not stupid!
S. Neoh
Joined Oct 4, 2009
563 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Me on Kamakaze 5.10a (Ozone)
I remember being surprised when I talked to my partner about cleaning & rapping from anchors, and he said "Oh, don't bother with that, at Rumney there are quick clips so you can just lower from the anchor." It seemed awfully convenient at first, but then I lead an easy climb (the terrace, I think?) and found that the quick clips at the anchor were worn more that halfway through the metal. Given the expense and hassle of changing out the clips regularly, and the hazard of having badly worn gear at the anchor, I'd be happy if the anchors went back to being just normal chains with a strict "don't lower off the chains" rule. I really appreciate the people who put the work and money into trying out quick links, and I can see the problem of newbies taking forever and risking mistakes when cleaning the anchor (the first time I cleaned an anchor my belayer had to shout up assistance too), but it seems too much to expect every quick link to be replaced annually, and I'd prefer no quick links to badly worn ones. Bill Shubert
From Lexington, MA
Joined Jul 20, 2012
60 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Horizontal in Skin the Cat (5.12-).
S. Neoh wrote:
Horns can be made from different size metal stocks. I think it is posted somewhere on the RCA site that the ones used at R does not have excessively high rating. I am assuming that the single horn Euro system uses a larger horn (made from thicker stock) paired with a 1/2" (?) glue-in. Besides, this vertically inline system have a lower back-up, usually a solid qlink or locking biner, which is not weighted unless the top horn fails. They might be nutty but not stupid!


The locker below would be prime! I should note that I've only be on one route with horns and that "two is a pain" was my initial reaction.
Eli Buzzell
From Lives in a 4runner
Joined Nov 21, 2010
4,378 points
Administrator
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Enter the Colossus
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
This is the best top anchor INMOP. tons of room to clip in and easily replaceable.


Winner winner chicken dinner!!!

And I'd point out you can use zinc plated quicklinks on SS hangers... Only thing is they went with the quickclips at rumney to keep parties moving at decent paces through routes and these are slower for parties as the leader has to untie.
Morgan Patterson
Joined Oct 13, 2009
8,902 points
Nov 13, 2015
Morgan Patterson wrote:
Winner winner chicken dinner!!! And I'd point out you can use zinc plated quicklinks on SS hangers.


ur gonna die!
T Roper
From DC,VA,NM,UT,CT,MA
Joined Mar 31, 2006
1,054 points
Nov 13, 2015
Out of curiosity, why not mussy hooks? Seems like they last longer than anything else. Hard to source? Expensive? Other issues?

Other sport places I've climbed have these on easy routes, and it seems to work well.

GO
GabeO
From New Haven, CT
Joined May 13, 2006
395 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Expatriot
T Roper wrote:
ur gonna die!

You may be right. I find it hard to believe that people can't figure out how to untie, thread the rope and rap. What the fuck are they doing up there anyway? As for making it quick to speed up people getting off routes; is that a joke? Considering how long people tie up routes, does the time, being couple of minutes, spent threading really mean anything? Appreciate what people have done putting up the anchors and rap. If people can't figure out how to pull this off, then it's now wonder people are offing themselves.
frank minunni
From Las Vegas, NV
Joined May 26, 2011
129 points


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